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Board of Education; Letter to the Community

To:      Fellow VCSD Community Members

From:  VCSD Board

Date:   September 11, 2017

Re:      Report to Our Community

 

            As we enter the new school year, we wanted to take a few moments to share with you an illustrative list of accomplishments achieved over the past year and to highlight major initiatives that will be undertaken in the coming school year.

            In 2016-2017:

  • Our district ranked 3rd out of 84 school districts in the greater Capital Region.
  • Our High School was designated a Rewards School by the NYS Education Department.
  • 100% of students who began as seniors in September, 2016 graduated in June, 2017.
  • The first course of the Project Lead the Way curriculum (Introduction to Engineering Design) was heavily subscribed and was implemented successfully.
  • Acceleration in math (7th grade) and science (8th grade) was significantly expanded. All students given the opportunity to participate in the accelerated curricula met the requirements to continue on the accelerated track.
  • Our athletic teams experienced great success throughout the year, including divisional championships, advancement in sectional play, school records, and scholar athlete awards.
  • Our student participation in extracurricular programs is very high, including 100 students in our Key Club and over 140 students in our Drama Clubs. Many of our extra curricular clubs received awards or recognition from local, state, or national panels.

 

 

Looking forward to this school year, your tax dollars have allowed the School District to significantly restore and expand its offerings and make other important enhancements, including:

  • The hiring of a full-time science teacher enabled the offering of additional science elective courses in the high school (Meteorology; Anatomy and Physiology) and also helped to control class sizes.
  • The second course of the Project Lead the Way curriculum (Principles of Engineering) has been implemented.
  • Work Based Learning is being offered to all 12th grade students to provide experience in career fields
  • All 12th grade students are enrolled in a college credit English class
  • For the first time, our 11th and 12th grade students have access to all BOCES Career and Technical programs at all 3 BOCES centers.
  • Additional high school staffing has allowed middle school teachers to return full time to advance the Grade 6 to Grade 8 curriculum. A S.T.E.A.M. (science, technology, engineering, the arts and math) class has been added for 7th graders and a computer science class has been added for 8th
  • Following a comprehensive year-long review process that included the input of families, teachers and administrators, a calibrated and more refined homework policy has been defined for application across all grades in the elementary school.

 

 

We appreciate the dedication and commitment of our teachers and administrators who give so very much for the benefit of our children and look forward to reporting to you next fall on the major successes that will be achieved this year. 

 

We also thank you, our community members, for your strong support.  To that end, we have eliminated admission fees from all athletic events.  We welcome you as our guests to come out to the games and cheer on our ‘Birds.  As a reminder, our senior citizens are also invited to attend our drama and musical productions free of charge. 

 

In closing we wish to highlight that, over the course of this year, we will be holding several community forums to take input on the district’s next major capital project.  This effort will culminate in a district referendum in May.  We welcome your feedback at our community forums and at our monthly Board meetings on the capital plan and other school district matters.